Instruct-ITALIA: Italian Infrastructure for Integrated Structural Biology

Instruct-ITALIAInstruct-ITALIA consists in a core of excellent research institutions and large centers that have a proven track record in structural biology and in service and expertise provision to users
Instruct-ITALIA aims to serve as a national consortium covering all main areas of structural biology research within Italy. Instruct-ITALIA aims at a more effective interaction within Italian scientists operating in this research area as well as to support access to the existing structural biology facilities of its national network. Instruct-ITALIA promotes and fosters an integrated approach at the national level.
Instruct-ITALIA is also present in the Italian Roadmap of Research Infrastructures, published in 2010, with CERM-CIRMMP, the Italian Centre of Instruct-ERIC, Elettra Sincrotrone S.C.p.A, and the Italian CNR, as participants.
Instruct-ITALIA integrates facilities and research groups internationally recognised in the areas and in the various methodologies of Structural Biology, covering a wide range of structural biology techniques, expertise and research topics: NMR, X-ray diffraction, Mass Spectrometry, SAXS, other Biophysical Methods, Protein Production and Light Microscopy, including optical nanoscopy.

Expertises offered to the users addresses the following topics:

  • Structural–based drug design.

  • Structural vaccinology

  • Intrinsically Unstructured Proteins

Examples of structural and biophysical platforms available with Instruct-ITALIA include

  • Platforms for HT cloning and production of proteins and protein complexes, in bacterial and eukaryotic cell systems

  • Protein isotope labelling

  • Co-expression strategies for reconstitution of multi-subunit protein complexes in bacteria and insect cells

  • Biophysical and biochemical characterization of protein and their complexes

  • Structural biology of proteins and their complexes with protein partners and small molecules by solution NMR

  • Protein aggregates through Solid State and sedimented NMR

  • Cellular structural biology through in cell NMR on eukaryotic cells

  • High-resolution X-ray crystallography of macromolecules and their assemblies

  • Electron microscopy (EM) and electron tomography (ET)

  • Cryo-EM of macromolecules and their assemblies

  • Platforms for robotic crystallization of proteins and nucleic acids

  • Low energy data collection and phasing

  • Confocal and Multiphoton platforrm for 4D (x-y-z-t) fluorescence and SHG

  • Optical Nanoscopy including RESOLFT - unlimited resolution (down 2.4 nm) 4D

  • Super resolution based on individual molecule localization 3D

  • Advanced image processing platform - GPU based

  • Multimodal Scanning probe microscopy in air, liquid, ultra-high-vacuum

  • Small angle X-ray scattering and 3D reconstruction

  • Atomic force microscopy imaging

  • Single molecule force spectroscopy

  • Thermodynamical characterization of protein-protein and protein-ligand interaction

  • Bioinformatics and computational tools for structural biology

  • Integration of structure techniques with different resolution levels